Antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy

Discordant temporal evolution of Pfcrt and Pfmdr1 genotypes and Plasmodium falciparum in vitro drug susceptibility to 4-aminoquinolines after drug policy change in French Guiana.

PMID 22232280


Analysis of the evolution of drug target genes under changing drug policy is needed to assist monitoring of Plasmodium falciparum drug resistance in the field. Here we genotype Pfcrt and Pfdmr1 of 700 isolates collected in French Guiana from 2000 (5 years after withdrawal of chloroquine) to 2008, i.e., the period when the artemether-lumefantrine combination was progressively introduced and mefloquine was abandoned. Gene sequencing showed fixation of the 7G8-type Pfcrt SMVNT resistance haplotype and near fixation of the NYCDY Pfdmr1 haplotype. Pfdmr1 gene copy number correlated with 50% inhibitory concentrations of mefloquine and halofantrine (r = 0.64 and 0.47, respectively, n = 547); its temporal changes paralleled changes in in vitro mefloquine susceptibility. However, the molecular parameters studied did not account for the regained in vitro susceptibility to chloroquine and showed a poor correlation with susceptibility to artemether, lumefantrine, or quinine. Identification of novel markers of resistance to these antimalarials is needed in this South American area.

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